Demonstrators in Greece have set fire to American and Turkish flags to express their strong condemnation of the recent downing of a Russian jet by Turkey. They also demanded that Greece pull out of NATO.
The Protesters gathered at Syntagma Square in Athens and marched toward the Turkish embassy but were stopped by police. Additional police were deployed at the embassy.
Press TV reports: They carried banners with messages in condemnation of NATO, and distributed leaflets, demanding that Greece pulls out of the Western military alliance.
Security forces did not allow leader of the left-wing Popular Unity Party Panagiotis Lafazanis to deliver a speech addressed to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan during the protest.
“The whole world is disturbed by the possible consequences of a Russian plane downing by your country,” part of the planned speech revealed to media read.
The protesters further made reference to what they said were daily violations of the Greek airspace by Turkish fighter jets, calling on Greek pilots to shoot down intruding Turkish aircraft.
They also voiced their support for Russia’s anti-terrorism campaign in the Middle East region, saying there is no excuse for what Turkey has done. “Russia is currently on the frontline not letting this carcinoma grow,” one protester said, adding, “We agree with the Russian president that what Ankara did was a stab in the back.”
NATO member Turkey shot down the Russian Sukhoi Su-24 bomber with two pilots aboard, claiming it had repeatedly violated its airspace. Russia denies the claim, saying the aircraft was downed inside Syria, where Russia has been carrying out operations against the Takfiri Daesh terrorists since September 30 upon a request by the Damascus government.
Based on radar imaging from Russia’s Hmeymim airbase, it was in fact the Turkish jet that violated Syrian airspace to attack the Russian jet.
In Bulgaria there were demonstrations in the capital Sofia and the Ataka party’s leader Volen Siderov praised the Russian operation in Syria, adding that the U.S. had not dealt with ISIS efficiently.